Children’s rights and juvenile justice in Australia and the United Kingdom

Chris Cunneen

Principal Investigator, Comparative Youth Penality Project, University of New South Wales,

The paper explores juvenile justice, human rights and young people in Australia and the United Kingdom. While it is acknowledged that there is a clear framework for respecting the human rights of children within juvenile justice, we ask the question to what extent do Australia and the UK actually operationalize and comply with these rights in law, policy and practice? Further, we consider the extent to which children rights violations are either ‘national’ problems or variable depending on specific contexts, and the complex interplay between the two.


Professor Chris Cunneen is a conjoint professor of criminology in the Faculty of Law of UNSW . From 1995 – 2005, he was the Director for the Institute of Criminology at the University of Sydney. Professor Cunneen is Chief Investigator on the ARC Comparative Youth Penality Project. Professor Cunneen is a member a number of journal Editorial Boards. He was the Chairperson of the Juvenile Justice Advisory Council which advised the Minister on juvenile justice matters from 2002-2008. Professor Cunneen has published widely in the area of juvenile justice, policing, restorative justice, hate crime and Indigenous issues.